Perspectives for a Changing World

On Wednesday 1 October, the IE School of International Relations was honored to host Mr. Josep Piqué i Camps, keynote speaker at the Opening Ceremony of the 2014/2015 Master in International Relations (MIR). Mr. Piqué served as Minister of Foreign Affairs of Spain and is currently Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the OHL Group, an international concessions and construction group that operates in more than 30 countries across all five continents.

In his speech, Mr. Piqué highlighted the massive power shift the world has experienced in a relatively short period of time. Until recently, no one questioned the hegemony of the West. But the center of gravity has now shifted from West to East with the relative decline of the Unites States and the rise of China and India, two formidable players in world politics today.

According to Mr. Piqué, the Strait of Malacca will become the “Greenwich Meridian” of the 21st Century, the frontier that separates and connects East and West. In this new scenario, Europe will become peripheral unless it unites. “Only a federal Europe will be successful in international politics”, said Mr. Piqué.

In his remarks, Mr. Piqué also shared some candid insights on his career and personal trajectory. Trained initially in Economics, he remained in academia until opportunities both in the private sector and in politics came knocking on his door. Mr. Piqué emphasized the importance of humility to succeed and recommended that “as the next generation of global leaders, you should be open to change and seize opportunity”.

This 2014/2015 MIR Intake is composed of 26 students from 15 different countries with diverse backgrounds in journalism, literature, translation, engineering and business.



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